Massive Flamingo Installation Lands at Florida Airport

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Since late 2022, an enormous flamingo has taken up residence at the Tampa International Airport. Artist Matthew Mazzotta created the giant flamingo as a tribute to Florida's most recognizable bird and to the comings and goings of the travelers who pass through the airport. Titled HOME, the oversize installation has become a favorite of travelers, whether it's adults taking selfies or children playing on its legs.

Mazzotta cleverly shows the bird as if it were hunting for food. The reflective material on the ceiling looks like the surface of the water, and the flamingo's beak reaches down to grab a meal. This means that we are underwater with the flamingo, immersed in its environment, which was exactly that artist's point.

“Flights arrive and depart from Tampa International Airport, full of travelers leaving their homes, returning back home, going to a new home, or simply to a place that feels like home,” Mazzotta shares. “The concept of ‘home' is not only for people—Florida is also home to an abundance of wildlife.”

He elaborates: “The exaggerated scale of this pink bird transports us into its world and reminds us that we all share the same home.” This hopefully fosters a sense of connection between people and the beautiful nature in Florida.

Thanks to an international contest with 65,000 entries, Mazzotta's flamingo even has a name—Phoebe. HOME is one of two pieces by Mazzotta that after among 100 international public artworks nominated for a 2023 CODA award.  The public has until July 31 to vote for their favorite.

HOME is an oversize immersive installation by Matthew Mazzotta at Tampa International Airport.

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

The giant flamingo appears to be reaching underwater to grab its next meal.

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

The bird, which was named Phoebe after a public contest, has been a favorite of travelers since it was installed.

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Child Playing on Flamingo Installation by Matthew Mazzotta at Tampa International Airport

Mazzotta's installation is one of 100 public artworks nominated for the 2023 CODA awards.

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Close View of Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Home - Flamingo Installation at Tampa International Airport by Matthew Mazzotta

Matthew Mazzotta: Website | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Matthew Mazzotta.

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Artist Spends Day Inside Giant Clock at Amsterdam Airport to Draw Its Hands in Real Time

Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Contributing Writer and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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